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Customer Service and Support

Customer service and support careers can be forged within many different industries, for instance: Retail, Financial Services, Energy and Utilities or Technology. But you could also work within the Public Sector, for instance within Local Government and related organisations.

The public/private divide isn’t always obvious, as with Utilities, but also with other service areas such as Leisure, Sport and tourism and Healthcare, so keep an open mind about who you could work for. Also keep an open mind about routes into these areas, you might find a graduate scheme you like focusing on customer services, but a more common way into a graduate level job would be through specific roles advertised through a range of sources depending on the employer.

Services (and therefore customer service functions) of one kind or another are part of our daily lives: at work and at leisure, when things are going well and to plan and when they aren’t. So, there is certainly variety on offer. There are also constant changes in terms of customer needs and expectations and in the ways that services are delivered. Consider technological advances, changes due to events like the pandemic, and the way trends relating to service delivery in one area can quickly spread and appear in another area.

Career Zone Employability Schemes

(to help increase your work experience and networks in this area) 

  • Career Zone Internship schemes: Internships can be extremelyuseful, so try to get relevant vacation work or placements.  
  • Ask an Alum: A fuss-free way to connect with University of Exeter alumni to ask careers questions.  
  • Career Mentor Scheme: A popular employability scheme which matches a student or graduate with an experienced professional, for sector insight and one-to-one careers advice and guidance, over a 6-month period. 
  • Professional Pathways: a suite of sector specific training courses and paid week-long internships that take place in June.  

Information Resources 

Have a look at the following brief videos for an overview of this sector and roles. 

To see if there are any Exeter alumni working in this sector that you can get in touch with, go to the LinkedIn Alumni tool

If you would like to do further research into this sector, the following webpages may be very useful: 

For general information about finding graduate opportunities, please visit our Graduate Jobs page and for a list general job search engines please visit our general job sources page. For sector specific job listings, the following resources may be particularly helpful: 

  • Jobs Go Public– Public sector jobs in local government, education, housing and more.
  • Local Gov Jobs – searchable source of jobs at all levels and locations.

As with other business functions spanning different industries, vacancy sources can be found under specific sector information, if you have a preference, or by using fairly obvious key words. It’s worth going directly to websites of employers you would like to work for. Perhaps there are specific services you are more interested in, or would particularly like to improve for customers.

Being a member of a professional body is voluntary however, it can be valuable for developing networks, continuing your professional development, and generally keeping up to date with what's happening in the sector. 

For training and professional development these bodies are the most relevant:

If you would like to pursue postgraduate study before entering your chosen sector, please visit our Postgraduate Study information page for more information about choosing further study. 

It can often be useful to gain postgraduate qualifications in the relevant subject area if your undergraduate degree is in a different topic but, beware, there are many courses on the market, and they are not all equally successful in getting you that "dream job". You can always complement your degree with professional qualifications to show your commitment towards the industry (see Professional Bodies section).